After realizing I lost at least 2 post drafts I had in my old computer I am trying to gather some of the most relevant thoughts from the last 2 months.
I did not really feel a winter pass us by (just like last year and the year before)- actually is there such thing as a winter in this part of California? I would say, certainly not.
Once again, my winter coats did one thing: collect more dust. I might even take them to the cleaners, with last year’s tag still on them! My consolation is…SPRING!
Spring fills the air with the scent of orange blossoms for several months. Our grapefruit trees and all the orchards around us have endless rows of trees, loaded with oranges and grapefruit. The weather is extremely pleasant – despite an occasional heat wave. Taking our small dog -Cinder- on walks is actually enjoyable and -on some days- something I look forward to .
The school year end is fast approaching. The realization that our youngest child is already in Middle School is just sinking in, and before we know it summer will be here.
My body feels like it has aged 20 years in the last 5, really. But my health is not going to be the focus of this post, so I will just say that with that accelerated ageing feeling, also came more conversations about drugs, vaping, sex, etc with both the kids and it just added up to feeling 60 sometimes.
Certain days, I believe the kids do enjoy being with us, being home or out dining, or on a trip, but some others I see and feel the beginning of the phase in which they’d rather be alone or with friends or wherever except home. So I am doing as much as I can to enjoy those days when they are mentally and physically with us. A couple of years ago, I was obsessed with getting rid of every single stuffed animal in the house due to the dust and allergens they carry. Today, I find myself smiling and getting a fuzzy feeling in my heart when I see them in the kids’ rooms. Just half a dozen or so that survived the most brutal spring cleaning during 2017. Once a week I have a sleepover with my daughter and her favorite one is always in her arms – Maggie-. A bunny that I don’t believe will ever leave the house. Even though those nights I wake up with a sore back or kinked neck for not sleeping in my own bed, I enjoy her company , reading and chatting with her, and laughing at the zillion silly faces she makes when she talks, and one of the last thoughts in my head is usually “how many more sleepovers will we have?”.
My son will not let me anywhere near his territory at night. His bed is like his personal haven. Blankets included. So I take whatever I can get: a hug, a barely brushed kiss, an “I love you mom, can you leave now?”. I save it all in my head and my heart and keep it there , safe, so I can remember it in those moments when they are not with me, or when they are making me so mad, it calms me down to remember how tender they can be. And helps me remember they do love me. Even when they are rude and testy.:it is all part of the Hormone package- that is what I tell my self.
My son is 6 ft. tall now, and he is only 13. So I have also had to get used to the idea of look up at him, as I ask him what he wants for breakfast , or as I yell at him for not picking his messes up, or – to hug him. A new type of hug has officially started: the arm position has been swapped: he hugs my shoulders and back, I hug his chest and waist. Just like I do with my husband, except this is my little boy we are talking about. My little boy with brand new pimples every week or so, with a voice deeper than his Dad’s. With hairy legs and a goofy demeanor. Such a bag of mixed feelings and attitudes, this early teen age.
The electronics crisis continues, not only within our family, but in every other family I know. Devices, with their ever changing sleek designs and alluring apps for social media and games of every imaginable type, keep numbing our children’s brains and totally absorbing their attention, which is already a challenge to get. Time goes by with the speed of light when it comes to sitting down and watching You Tube videos, playing games or posting the most irrelevant, random or hilarious comments or photos on social media. I myself, am having a hard time grasping the speed and magnitude of this digital era.
I recently went to watch a play in Mexico City called PRIVACIDAD. The original production is English, by James Graham (Privacy, 2014).
The point of this audience-interactive production is to raise awareness about the lack of privacy in this day and age, specifically attributed to the use of social media and texting, online shopping, etc I totally got it and agreed with it’s lesson: be careful with what you share. But I really doubt that the younger generations ( not to mention really young kids I see in strollers already using Ipads and smartphones) will get for a while.
The whole scandal with Facebook is part of the point that is presented in this play: what we are, what we like, what we know and who we know is all data, and for someone out there it is worth millions of dollars. But I guess some bad things -or inconveniences- need to happen before regulations get tighter and we , as users of social media, get more knowledgeable with our digital behavior.
This country seems to be going through a complex political mess; so more reasons for me not to listen to the news. And when I do turn on the radio during my commute to work, it really sounds like a looping recording where I think “didn’t I hear that last week? or last month?” ; not only that, but the international news are just as depressing as always. The sad part is, sometimes those news are what puts my own chaos in perspective: I am in a crisis worrying about college, and taxes, and retirement savings, and then I listen to interviews where mothers crying in Syria wondering if they will make it one more night and it they can keep they kids safe.
But I don’t have to go very far to feel sympathy for the younger ones. The controversial DACA program going under a revision where parties can’t seem to agree on, is also causing great anxiety among these young adults and their parents as well. (By the way, I applaud the producers/writers of Grey’s Anatomy for featuring this difficult subject in the most recent episode of this medical drama).
Anywhere we look there is a lot of trouble and challenges that (should) make us appreciate that our path and our current situation maybe aren’t so bad.
To end my post today, I have to say that I miss my Mom and Dad tremendously. There is not a single day that goes by when they are not in my thoughts. The simplest thing will trigger a memory, or a photo, or a word or even the sound of my own voice.
And I have to admit, the older I get, the more I feel like I am adopting my Dad’s ways:
- I now keep a flashlight in my bedside table (he kept about 4 for reasons unknown, as of today, I only have one). I also keep sleeping pills there, just like him.
- I have a long wood back-scratcher that was actually his.
- I have acquired a likeness for gardening and have become very proud of some of my plants/trees. My Dad was in love with his fruit trees and actually sent us photos of him next to his trees loaded with fruit- a bit too much at times, like 3 photos of the same tree, one standing, one sitting, one holding a lime. LOL
- I am SO loud on the phone, even I get annoyed. Just like him. I shout.
- I hug and kiss my kids a bit too much, the older I get the needier I seem
But I actually accept these things and find some of them funny , others not so much…
So with the true resolution of trying not to be so loud on the phone and mushy with my kids, I wish you all a happy Sunday, a happy spring. I am looking forward to some more cleaning- all Teddy bears aside.